Abnormal Electrophysiological Activation in Schizophrenics during a Personal Traits Attribution Task
Changes in personal identity have been described as a major component in the expression of schizophrenia. Considering current evidence that relates the cortical structures of the medial line with the self, we hypothesize that there are differences in the frontomedial electrophysiological activation in schizophrenics when compared to normal subjects during tasks that require this function. In an experimental design, 9 schizophrenic and 7 normal subjects participated in a personal traits attribution task regarding the attribution of the self, another person and a simple reading. Electric brain activity was recorded with a dense array of 128 electrodes, with evoked brain potentials being obtained for the three conditions. Considering the evoked potential morphology, repeated measures ANO VA were performed on the adaptive mean for the 180-230 ms time window (P200) in the frontomedial electrodes, with a group effect being found (F=5.352; p=0.038). Comparisons of the groups show that the schizophrenics presented less voltage in the seZ/condition (t=2.386; p=0.033). Although the results are not consistent with the hypothesis, it can be suggested that the early modulation of word-related meaning formation in a self-referential context could be affected in schizophrenia.